Uganda: man admits ritual murder, becomes state witness

Also see my posts dated August 30, 2018 – “Get rid of this evil”: High Court judge calls govt to ban all shrines in Uganda – and August 20, 2018We wanted wealth!’ Four witch doctors arrested over ritual murders tell Police and  and more articles – on the ritual murders in Kayunga District (webmaster FVDK).

Published: November 12, 2019
By: Jalira Namyalo

One of the persons implicated in ritual killing and burial of five people in a shrine in Kisoga Village, Nazigo Sub-county in Kayunga District has been sentenced to five years in prison after he pleaded guilty.
Joseph Kibuuka, alias Junior, pleaded guilty to murder charges but court reduced the charge to being an accessory to the murder under the plea bargain process. 

After the sentencing, Kibuuka turned into a prosecution witness. He entered the witness box and testified against the five other accused persons with whom he had been indicted for murder of five people among them Zulaika Nansamba Mirembe.

Other suspects are Ssebuyungo alias Owen Sonko (witchdoctor/ herbalist); Muhammad Wamala alias Vincent Bob; James Lutwama; Fred Kiiza Ssemanda and Issa Walakira.

In his testimony, Kibuuka said the deceased Mirembe came to Ssebuyungo’s shrine one evening in May and they had a meal with her and Wamala in a trading centre before going back to Ssebuyungo’s shrine.

“At around 9pm, we (Wamala, Mirembe and Barbara, a sister of Ssebuyungo) drove back and they dropped me at my place near Ssebuyungo’s shrine. Wamala told me not to close the door because he was to sleep at my place but he did not come. In the morning when I went to clean the shrine, I found a fresh grave and did not see Mirembe. I was scared and feared to say anything,” Kibuuka narrated.
According to Kibuuka, after sometime Ssebuyungo and Wamala had disagreements which prompted Wamala to report a case of murder to police.
 
He said it is Wamala who trained Ssebuyungo in witchcraft but could not tell how other bodies were buried in the same shrine. 
He said he worked at the shrine for few months as a cleaner.

Source: Man admits ritual murder, becomes state witness

“Get rid of this evil”: High Court judge calls govt to ban all shrines in Uganda

Judge Margaret Mutonyi

Published: August 29, 2018
By: Ug Christian News

A High Court judge has asked government to ban shrines throughout the country, a local news daily has reported.

Judge Margaret Mutonyi while addressing hundred at an event organised by one Christian Charity and advocacy organisation, Kyampisi Childcare Ministries (KCM) said Parliament should enact a law to ban shrines in this country.

“If I had powers, I would have ordered immediate demolition of all shrines to get rid of this evil since they are semi-permanent structures where owners can easily be compensated,” she said.

Her appeal comes at a time reports on the practice of ritual killing and human sacrifice continue to make headlines in the country. This is a ruthless practice of removing body parts, blood or tissue from an individual, alive or dead. A victim that survives sacrifice is left with traumatizing consequences for the rest of their lives.

Earlier this month, Police officials confirmed the arrest of six witch doctors after five human bodies and a skull believed to be of a child were retrieved from their shrines in Kayunga District. They have been remanded on murder charges, sources said.

“We should not only look at stopping this evil of child sacrifice but look at the genesis of this problem. I work in Mukono where shrines (owners) thrive and camouflage as traditional healers while using funny things like blood. Parliament should enact a law to ban shrines in this country,” Margaret Mutonyi said, according to the Daily Monitor.

The Judge urged that shrines have no place in the modern world.

“We are faced with this brutality but those who are still alive have no body parts and are suffering even when their tormentors are punished. But with the looming amendment (in the laws), they should include psycho-socio support to victims and treatment by government,” the judge advised.

Justice Mike Chibita, the Director of Public Prosecutions according to the media outlet urged the public to join the fight against human sacrifice.

“It takes a village to raise a child, let us continue with that role and strive to protect the children,” he said.

Source: “Get rid of this evil”: High Court judge calls govt to ban all shrines in Uganda

 

Uganda: ‘We wanted wealth!’ Four witch doctors arrested over ritual murders tell Police

One of the suspects – upon interrogation – discloses the buried bodies and police exhumes the missing persons (PML Daily PHOTO)

Published: August 13, 2018
By: Maurice Muhwezi

KAYUNGA – Police in Naggalama has arrested four witchdoctors for alleged ritual killing.

A disappearance report of Mirembe Zuraika was filed at Naggalama Police Station on August 11 and Police mounted a search leading to the arrest of the witchdoctors.

The DPC Naggalama ASP Jessica Naawe confirmed that the relatives of Mirembe reported a case of the disappearance of their daughter and tipped off police that she had talked of having an appointment with a one Owen Sebuyungo, a 24-year-old witch doctor.

In his confession, Sebuyungo narrated that Mirembe visited his shrine for help since she had been possessed by evil spirits (empewo).

Sebuyungo then contacted his spiritual consultant a renowned witchdoctor Mohammed Wamala alias Bob who enticed him to murder Mirembe.

One of the suspects held over the vicious ritual murders is led to a cell at Naggalama Police Station (PML Daily PHOTO)

Wamala allegedly told Sebuyungo that he would amass lots of wealth if he could cut off the head of a female human being.

Following leads, police conducted further investigations leading to the arrest of a syndicate of witch doctors that are believed to have participated in the heinous act.

Upon thorough questioning, the four confessed to having welcomed Mirembe at the shrine and at dawn, beheaded her and buried the head in the shrine.

The suspects then led Police to the shrine where she had been buried.

Shockingly five bodies buried in a rather disturbing position were exhumed.

Wamala told Police he had ferried over eight females from his home in Ganda Nansana, murdered and buried them at this shrine located in Ntunda Kayunga.

Police has also recovered a number of items that include spears and pots filled with fresh blood suspected to be human blood.

Several bodies were exhumed by the Police at the shrine (PML Daily PHOTO)

Blood samples have been picked, taken to the Government Analytical Laboratory (GAL) while the recovered bodies that had decomposed beyond recognition have been taken to Mulago hospital for DNA test so that the relatives can identify them.

“The search is still going on. We suspect more bodies must still be buried under the remaining five shrines,” ASP Naawe said.

Police has since cordoned off the area as the search for more evidence continues in this strange murder case.
The four suspects identified as Junior Kibuuka, Fred Kiiza Semanda, Wamala Muhammed and Owen Sebuyungo are detained at Naggalama Police Station.

Source: We wanted wealth! Four witch doctors arrested over ritual murders tell Police
PML Daily, Uganda

Related articles:

Police, CMI recover five bodies from Kayunga shrine, healer arrested
By Fred Muzaale
Daily Monitor
August 11, 2018

Police in Naggalama, Mukono District and operatives from Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI) have arrested a traditional healer and also recovered five bodies from his shrine in Kisoga village, Nazigo sub-county, Kayunga District.
The Naggalama police division police commander, Ms Jesca Naawe, identified the suspect as a 27-year-old a renowned youthful traditional healer.
Ms Naawe explained on Saturday that the five bodies, one believed to be of a woman, and the rest of male adults, were dug from three shallow graves which were found in the suspect’s shrine.

Source: Police, CMI recover five bodies from Kayunga shrine, healer arrested

And:

Police find child skull in fresh search on shrines
By Fred Muzaale & Joseph Kato
Daily Monitor
August 14, 2018

 Mr Owen Ssebuyungo (squatting) one of the suspe

Mr Owen Ssebuyungo (squatting) one of the suspects directs police during the search in Kayunga District yesterday. PHOTO BY FRED MUZAALE

Kayunga- Security operatives yesterday retrieved a skull of a child when they resumed a search at a witch-doctor’s shrine in Kisoga village, Nazigo Sub-county in Kayunga District where five human bodies were recovered last Saturday.

The main suspect, Mr Owen Ssebuyungo, 27, and three other witch doctors are being held in separate detention centres.

The five bodies, one being of a woman, were dug up by police assisted by residents at Ssebuyungo’s grass-thatched shrine.

The security team resumed the operation at around 2pm although it was interrupted by a downpour.

The residents and police from Kayunga and Naggalama police stations used hoes to dig up the entire compound, which had five shrines, as the suspects watched.

By press time, police had recovered a skull of a child at the shrines, but the excavation was still ongoing.

More bodies

“We have come back to dig up the entire area because locals told investigators that they think there are still more bodies which were buried in the shrines,” Mr George Obia, Kayunga District Police Commander said.

Police have since Saturday maintained presence at Ssebuyungo’s shrine, which has been declared a scene of crime.

A house belonging to Ssebuyungo’s mother, standing a few metres from the shrines, looked deserted as she reportedly fled after her son’s arrest about a week ago.

Ssebuyungo, according to locals, lived with his wife in Kabimbiri town in the neighbouring Mukono District and only came to his shrines to attend to clients. His father Charles Ssonko, now deceased, was also a witch doctor.

The Local Council One chairman, Mr Bernard Ssekizira, said the discovery of human bodies at the shrine has left the residents in shock.

“Although we had heard rumours that Ssebuyungo was involved in suspicious acts of kidnapping people, we never took it seriously until Saturday when human bodies were discovered at his shrine,” Mr Ssekizira said.
He said the incident has tainted the image of their village, adding that people will start shunning the area.

He urged authorities to investigate activities of all witch-doctors in the area to arrest whoever is engaged in criminal acts.

Following the incident, Kayunga Deputy Resident District Commissioner Yahaya Were said they had stopped all activities of witch doctors in the district until the registered association of traditional healers goes to the district to verify the honest healers from the unscrupulous ones.

Residents in Mukono also told investigators that Ssebuyungo and his accomplices had another shrine in Kiwungi village in Ssi Sub-county, Buikwe District which they abandoned a year ago.

Police did not say whether they would also search the abandoned shrine.
Kampala Metropolitan police spokesperson Luke Owoyesigyire said one of the suspects, Wamala, had revealed to police that he often took young girls from his Nansana shrine to Kayunga shrine for offering to the gods.

“We arrested Wamala and while in detention at Naggalama Police Station, he confessed that he ferried eight women to this shrine. At the shrine, we recovered four bodies, a human skull and pots containing blood-like liquids but we suspect there could be more bodies in this shrine,” Mr Owoyesigyire said.

Women murders

He said police had not yet discovered the whereabouts of the said women but highly suspect they were murdered in ritual sacrifice within the shrine premises.

Last week police recovered the body of Allen Nakiyingi, a teacher in Kira Municipality in Wakiso District, buried in her lover’s house in Matugga town, in the same district.

She had gone missing for three weeks. The house in which Nakiyingi’s body was retrieved belonged to her boyfriend’s mother who is also a witch-doctor based in Kayunga District.

Purpose

Confessed: Ssebuyungo told security that they sacrificed human beings to woo many clients to their shrine.
The bodies, which had decomposed beyond recognition, were retrieved from shallow graves and a Shs5,000 note was placed on each of them.
Spears and pots of blood, suspected to have been drawn from human beings, were recovered at the shrine and taken to the Government Analytical Laboratory for investigation.
The bodies were taken to Mulago Hospital for DNA testing.

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

Source: Police find child skull in fresh search on shrines

And:

Locals destroy house, crops of Kayunga witch doctor’s mother
By Fred Muzaale
Daily Monitor
August 15, 2018

Residents of Kisoga village demolish Owen Ssebuyungo’s house on Tuesday. PHOTO BY STEPHEN OTAGE

Kayunga- Angry residents of Kisoga village, Nazigo Sub-county on Tuesday morning destroyed a house belonging to the mother of Owen Ssebuyungo, a witch doctor and key suspect in the murder of six people whose bodies were retrieved from his shrine on Monday.

The area LC2 chairperson, Mr Mohammed Kagimu, on Tuesday said the angry residents stormed Margaret Ssonko’s home at around 5am after the police, which had maintained presence in the area since Saturday, had left.

“Given the anger residents had, there was no way they could spare his parents’ home and crops,” Mr Kagimu said.

After destroying the home, they pounced on her garden and destroyed crops such as coffee and bananas. By 9am on Tuesday, residents were still seen cutting down the crops.

Fleeing for safety

Ms Ssonko reportedly fled the area a week ago after her son was arrested by Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence officers.

Ssebuyungo, together with three other suspects; Juniro Kibuuka, Fred Kiiza Semanda and Muhammed Wamala, are detained at Naggalama Division Police Station, according to Ms Jesca Naawe, the district police commander.

The Kayunga District Police Commander, Mr George Obia, criticised the residents for taking the law into their own hands.

He said on Monday evening, the police used a grader to excavate suspected crime points since tools such as hoes and mattock could not do the work in a short time possible.

He said apart from the child’s skull and bones that were recovered on Monday, no other bodies were found.“Our investigators have now gone to Nansana to search Mohammed Wamala’s shrine,” Mr Obia said.

Investigations

He, however, said investigations into the case have almost been concluded adding that the files would be taken to the resident state attorney today for perusal. “Most likely they will appear in court on Friday or latest on Monday,” he said.

Ms Naawe said the suspects will be transferred from Naggalama Police Station to Kayunga Police Station.

This incident has prompted the Resident District Commissioner Rose Birungi, who heads the district security committee to halt all activities of traditional healers in Kayunga district, located about 50 kilometres from Kampala.

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

Source: Locals destroy house, crops of Kayunga witch doctor’s mother